The Cardinals Can't Quite Back Up Jake Westbrook

Daily Rant: Cardinals Come Close, Lose Another 1-Run Game


The St. Louis Cardinals lack of success in one-run games has become a frustration not only for fans, but also for team management and players.  None were more frustrated the other night than Lance Lynn though, as he gave up 2 runs on 4 hits in just an inning of work.  As summer fades and fall dawns, the Redbirds need to find a way to muster a few more timely hits, so as to bring about the wins necessary to make the postseason.

Box Score:

Final 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
St Louis Cardinals 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 1 0 3 7 1
Washington Nationals 0 0 0 1 0 1 2 0 X 4 13 2
WP Ryan Mattheus (5-1, 2.50)
LP Lance Lynn (13-6, 4.08)

Jake Westbrook turned in a decent start, as he went 5 1/3 innings with just 2 earned runs allowed, and 6 strikeouts.  Edward Mujica continued his near perfection for the Cardinals, as he hasn’t allowed a run in 15 innings, and just 8 hits allowed since joining the Redbirds.

There was no scoring in the game until the 4th inning, when the Washington Nationals finally decided to show up, namely Kurt Suzuki.  He hit just his second homerun of the season.

In the 6th inning, Suzuki struck again, hitting a single to shallow center that scored Ian Desmond.  Throwing up the zeroes was Stephen Strasburg, who went 6 very strong innings, allowing just 2 hits, while striking out 9.  He lowered his season ERA to 2.94.

The St. Louis Cardinals finally struck in the 7th, when Daniel Descalso hit his 4th homer of the season off reliever Sean Burnett.  He scored both he and recent call-up Pete Kozma, continuing the trend of offense from unlikely places.  Ian Desmond and Danny Espinosa each hit run scoring singles in the 7th, to push the lead to 4-2.

A Tony Cruz run scoring double made the game interesting in the 8th, but the Redbirds couldn’t manage to bring him home from 2nd to tie the game.

Quick Look At The Standings:  The Cardinals lost again, but returned home to face the New York Mets today, and there will be a recap of that game tomorrow.  Looking ahead, the Redbirds have a chance to showcase their wares, as September call-ups loom large.  One in particular that brings a lot of excitement around the club is Shelby Miller, who was officially called up.  Though it’s unclear what role he will occupy for the remainder of the season, my best guess is that he will take the spot most recently shared by Lance Lynn and Joe Kelly.

Central W L Pct GB Home Road RS RA Diff Streak L10
 Cincinnati Reds (19) 82 53 .607 42-24 40-29 592 506 +86 Won 1 6-4
 St. Louis Cardinals 72 62 .537 9.5 40-26 32-36 646 550 +96 Lost 1 4-6
 Pittsburgh Pirates 70 63 .526 11.0 40-26 30-37 554 541 +13 Lost 3 3-7

The Redbirds still control their own destiny, and it is my prediction that they will make the playoffs, though I doubt they will catch the Cincinnati Reds.

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